5 Things I Needed to Unlearn about God

Along my own personal faith journey I have come to understand more about God and His nature through my readings and study, prayer time and personal revelations.  Here are 5 things I needed to UNLEARN about God or at least my own understanding of Him. 

1. I need to impress God.

I am what we call a Sanguine personality, the life of the party. One of my biggest weaknesses is the need to please people. You want everyone to like you and you base much this off approval. For years, I wanted God to like me and my motives in anything were the need to please or impress Him. If I was good enough or could say the right thing. I would base my relationship with God on how much I did for Him and how long I did it for. It was when I had the revelation that God wants to be with me more than I want to be with him. He is way more interested in me than I could ever be in Him. When I understood this it freed to me to live for Him out of this understanding! We love Him because He first loved us (1 John 4:19)…and that love is not stopping. It goes on forever, despite us.

2. God is mad at me when I sin.

We have all sinned and in fact we do it on a daily basis, whether by choice or by the mere fact, we are imperfect beings. We all sense feels of guilt or shame when we sin or do wrong and often we run from God. We think that this is an of act of penance for what we did. How could God be want a relationship with me after I have sinned? When Jesus died on the cross He did so knowing of all of our sin past, present and future and not just for us but for all of mankind. Mine included! And He still died! There is nothing we can do that God isn't already aware. Our sin doesn't surprise or shock Him. The best thing we can do when we sin is accept the grace He has already given and allow that to continue to work in us to change us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive them all. (1 John 1:9). Always choose to run closer to Him, not further away.

Photo by Tim Landis @curious2119

Photo by Tim Landis @curious2119

3. I can't worship God because I am not perfect.

For years, I felt I couldn't draw near to God because I had to clean myself up first. I spent so much time trying to 'get right'. However, it wasn't until I understood it was Him who made me right and did so by being in His presence. True change comes from spending time with God. You can't clean yourself up, that's Gods job, by His grace and by His truth. My worship and life lived must never be to try and win God's favour because I already have it. I must worship and live for God out of a response to who He is. He is love. He is grace and He does care for me. A life lived for God must be from this standpoint. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you (James 4:8).

4. God is only into Church goers.

It is so easy to think that God is only interested or hears those who go to church. Often people have said to me, Can you pray for me, I know you have a direct line to God. The truth is we all have a direct line, God hears everyone and is sincerely interested in being involved in everybody's life on a daily basis. It's only when we realize that we too, have a part in this relationship that makes it work. Jesus is speaking to all us all at all times, it is just a matter if we are listening. God cares for all people and when we encounter others, we should remember that God is for them just as much as He is for us, even if though don't practice the same routines we do. For God So loved THE WORLD (John 3:16).

Photo by Tim Landis @curious2119

Photo by Tim Landis @curious2119

5. God wants me to be happy.

We have heard it said that if God loves me then He would want me to be happy. It is true that God wants to bring good things into our lives, but what God really wants is for us is to love Him and love others. We can justify the things we want out of life by living in the idea that it's only our happiness that matters. But what about God? Where does He fit in our equation? Or is He just the Santa Clause that gives us what we ask for or The Father who gives us what we truly need? Maybe the bigger question is How does Christ want to change me so I can be what He needs me to be for others. Jesus' greatest command was to love God and Love people ( Mark 12:30-31). The first is to place Him above all others and that includes ourselves. True happiness comes when we get a hold of the life that God has for us and walk that out. It may not always mean getting what we want, but it sure does mean becoming what we are called. 

Scott Bakken